Three colour photographs of railway themed murals from around St. Thomas, ca. 1980s. Courtesy of Elgin County Archives.
The St. Thomas Railway murals are part of a larger project featuring 11 murals on historical themes painted on the walls of various downtown buildings beginning in the mid 1990’s.
Given the importance of railways to the economic development of the city, six of these murals have railway themes:
The Canada Southern by Dan & Peter Sawatsky
Elgin’s Finest and When I’m Big by Dan & Peter Sawatsky
Foundation of Town by Rail by Paul Membourquette,
Memories of the Marquette Yards by Fred Harrison
St. Thomas Street Railway 1906 by Nicholas Wilkinson
The project was the inspiration of Jack Richardson, a long-time St. Thomas businessman who has been engaged in numerous community building projects over his career. He was a driving force behind the On Track organization in the promotion of the murals project.
This project serves to enlighten residents on the importance of railways to the community’s development and prosperity, and provides points of artistic interest to visitors to the city and county.